The Priory of the Orange Tree
The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Queen Sabran the Ninth evades assassination attempts, protected with secret forbidden magic by her lady-in-waiting. The still unwed queen must produce a daughter to protect her realm from destruction, while a secret society works to prevent a dragon war.
Diandra says: The Priory of the Orange Tree is a descriptive court intrigue novel with a dash of fantasy elements. This is a very slow-paced novel where the author takes a lot of time to focus on world-building. Overall, a solid read.
Available in eBook
Diandra's Past Staff Picks
Engaging the services of a miniaturist to furnish a cabinet-sized replica of her new home, 18-year-old Nella Oortman, the wife of an illustrious merchant trader, soon discovers that the artist's tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in eerie and unexpected ways.
Donna says: Historical fiction readers should enjoy the rich details of life in seventeenth-century Amsterdam. Unraveling the secrets of this household will keep your attention as you attempt to unfold the mystery behind the miniaturist. This would be a good selection for the Book About Secrets category for Read More 2020
Available in eBook & Large Print
Donna's Past Staff Picks
I am Malala
When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, she was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive. Instead, Malala's miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. At sixteen, she has become a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate.
Elizabeth says: Malala Yousafzai'a story is one of unbelievable courage and determination. A great choice for the Read More 2020 category Woman of Steel.
Available in: Audiobook, eBook, eAudiobook & Large Print
Elizabeth's Past Staff Picks
We Have Always Lived in the Castle
Merricat, Constance, and their Uncle Julian live in isolation after experiencing a family tragedy six years earlier. When cousin Charles arrives to steal the family fortune, he also threatens a dark secret they've been hiding.
Megan says: This film is based on the novel by Shirley Jackson. I read the book and did not care for it, but the film adaptation is excellent. It is a dark noir that haunts as well as intrigues. I loved the set design, costumes and creative camera shots.
Megan's Past Staff Picks
The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
Mary Jekyll, alone and penniless following her parents' death, is curious about the secrets of her father's mysterious past. One clue in particular hints that Edward Hyde, her father's former friend and a murderer, may be nearby, and there is a reward for information leading to his capture a reward that would solve all of her immediate financial woes. When her investigations lead her to a group of women, all of whose “fathers” were connected to hers, she’s led to the discovery of a secret society of immoral and power-crazed scientists, and the horrors of their past return.
Nina says: Goss takes what female characters there are in classic literary science fiction – From The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to The Island of Doctor Moreau – and places them front and center in an engrossing narrative that not only reimagines the genre through a feminist lens, but also questions what makes man and what makes the monster? The first in a trilogy, Strange Case is perfect for the Read More 2020 categories Retelling, Secrets or Secrecy, or Women of Steel.
Available in: eBook, eAudiobook, & Audiobook
Nina's Past Staff Picks
In an alternate-reality world under the shadow of a magical government bent on transmuting the fabric of reality, two alchemical twins, one skilled with language and the other with math, become catalysts in their creator's grab for power.
Randall says: This tale of alchemy and preternatural twins is perfect for your Read More 2020: Magic or Illusions. McGuire’s handling of the complex plot with its alternate timelines and resets is nothing short of perfection, while the rigorous world-building will delight fans of both fantasy and science fiction.
Available in eBooks & eAudiobook
Randall's Past Staff Picks
Child of God
Set in Tennessee in the 1960s, Lester Ballard--a violent, dispossessed man falsely accused of rape--haunts the hill country of East Tennessee when he is released from jail. While telling his story, Cormac McCarthy depicts the most sordid aspects of life with dignity, humor, and characteristic lyrical brilliance.
Swaneet says: This book is not for the faint of heart, but it is one of my absolute favorites. The first time I read it I felt a powerful melancholy, the kind you get when you're experiencing something so fantastic and you know nothing will ever replicate that feeling. Consider this short read for your Read More 2020 - Southern Gothic Literature.
Swaneet's Past Staff Picks